UPB Delay

RandyKnight

Active Member
As many of you know, I've been evaluating UPB vs. Insteon and have about 20 of each type of device in my house right now. One thing I've found with UPB is the WAF is lower due to the delay when turning a light on/off. Insteon is instantaneous for the local load and a delay only exists when sending a remote command (i.e. a slave switch, group, etc.).

The dealy and the buzzing are both causing a lowered WAF for UPB. Not to mention the price tag.

Thoughts?
 

majortom

Member
I played with UPB when it first became available. I decided against it because it was priced much too high and was too slow. Two years later it is still much too expensive. Like many of these products, they seem most interested in competing with Crestron, AMX and Lutron, not with X-10 and dumb switches.

/carmi
 

Steve

Senior Member
All I can say is its highly personal and has been discussed almost ad nauseum. You will find many threads here on the subject. The delay is because UPB is looking for mutiple taps. The buzz you only hear when listening for it, unless you have bionic ears. That is my opinionion which I know is shared by many that I have spoken with.

Automated control is near instantaneous and that's what automated switches are for anyway. When we use local control the slight delay doesn't both me or the wife at all. Maybe we are just too casual but we are very happy with the way it performs. And it runs circles around Insteon for setup IMHO which makes MY life easier.
 

RandyKnight

Active Member
I agree wholeheartedly on the setup issues. You know from other threads that I'm leaning towards UPB and just made a significant investment in devices. But this was an issue that was a difference. I didn't notice until she brought it up but now it bugs me too. ;)

I'd say UPB remote activation is even a bit faster than Insteion, but Insteon local load activiation is about the same as a "dumb" switch, which is what we're used to. Again, it may be a "getting used to it" issue but I thought she had a valid point.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
Steve said:
All I can say is its highly personal and has been discussed almost ad nauseum.
One thing that I would like to see compared more closely is setup using UpStart v.s. setup using PowerHome. I have never used UpStart or UPB but my experience with using PowerHome to set up and manage switches is about as easy as I could imagine such a process ever getting.

I hear UpStart has some cool signal strength diagnostics, but besides that what makes it easier to use than PoweHome?
 

opie

Active Member
I only briefly played with a demo version of PowerHome but I was never able to get it to recognize any Insteon switches (no fault of PowerHome). I believe this may have been due to the fact that my 2414U had the Salad application altered by another HA Software package but I didn't look too far into it.

I purchased one of the UPB eval kits and have been testing them with my ELK Panel. I had no problems with UPStart and was suprised at the how much could be altered at the switch level like LED color etc... but I suppose that is more of a feature difference between UPB and Insteon.

I don't know PowerHome's capabilities well but here are a few of the features I found handy in UPStart:

The set-up was very easy and similar to PowerHome as I understand it. Set the UPStart to listen, and put a switch into set-up mode, the switch is added.

The Network Discovery feature is also handy, especially for an installer going into a system that was not programmed by them or if the file was lost. Place one switch in linking mode and the software will discover the other devices and links associated with that switch. A lot less running around.

The visual linking is very nice, just drag and drop to create your links and then download the information to the switches.

Having said that. I too am annoyed by the latency with local load control and I must have really good hearing because the buzzing drives me nuts. My wife also doesn't like the buzz but she hates the Insteon bright lights more. I fixed the V2s in the bedroom with masking tape and it subdued the light quite nicely.

Next I would like to erase my 2414U and work with PowerHome a little more.
 

RandyKnight

Active Member
I've used both PowerHome and UPStart quite extensively at this point. In terms of functionality, I'd say they're about the same with the underlying issues being UPB vs. Insteon more than PowerHome vs. UPStart. UPB is designed to be programmed from the computer. PowerHome is a bit of a hack since Insteon switches are designed to be tap linked to each other.

The only other thing that I would say is that PowerHome has a much more painful UI. It had a much steeper learning curve than UPStart because of this. Of course, UI design is all in the eye of the beholder but that's my take on it.

Beyond that, key differences are:

PowerHome updates devices in the background so you never really know if it's working or not without looking at the SDM. UPStart OTOH uses a modal dialog box for programming so you can't do anything while programming is taking place. Both have their advantages. I think the best would be a dialog box like UPStart that was not modal.

I could never get auto discovery to work with PowerHome. I just typed in the Insteion addresses. Not a big deal to me. In fact, one advantage of Insteon/PowerHome is that if you know the addresses of your devices, you don't have to go to the switches at all.

The only other thing I would say is that PowerHome takes a LONG time to program devices. Again, I think this is an Insteon issue more than PowerHome.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
RandyKnight said:
In fact, one advantage of Insteon/PowerHome is that if you know the addresses of your devices, you don't have to go to the switches at all.

The only other thing I would say is that PowerHome takes a LONG time to program devices. Again, I think this is an Insteon issue more than PowerHome.
I just typed mine in because I didn't want to visit the switches at all. Just banged them in while watching TV so it was pretty painless.

I think the device programming transmissions are spaced out so PowerHome can continue to receive incoming powerline traffic in between. This keeps you from having to bring the system down during programming but it might be awhile before all the updates get transmitted and acknowledged. Fortunately you can set up your changes as fast as you can type them and then let PowerHome transmit them unattended.
 

kwilcox

Active Member
I've had no WAF issues with UPB here either. Its fast and reliable and because the lights ramp up, its hard to notice the delay even if you're looking for it. Of course, our house lighting is all sensor activated so we hardly ever use the lightswitches anyway. UPB's speed cut sensor trip -> lights on delay in half so I wasted no time in putting USR-30's everywhere. About the only problem I've had is a pesky noise issue with some laptop power supplies that causes signals from one of my UMI-32s to get missed occasionally. I'm still hoping that SAI will release a UPB filter product for this....
 

Steve

Senior Member
I'm still hoping that SAI will release a UPB filter product for this....
They've either got them already, or are *very* close. I spoke with Brad about them in respect to my cooktop. Brad - status?
 
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